"My life sucks and I wish I was dead," cried my 11-year-old son. The words sliced through my heart as I tried to console him. My mommy radar went into full alert at such language. I know that this can be a sign of depression, and immediately I knew I needed to start helping him transition from tween to teen as the hormonal influences begin early.
For a great many people, post holiday-season winter can be an emotional let-down, and the beginning of three long, cold months that seem to go on forever. In fact, cold, snowy weather and short, dark days can bring out the worst in parents who feel cooped up with bored, whining children...sound familiar? Being stuck indoors makes everyone cranky! Winter can make parents less patient, less understanding and more frustrated with kids who are bickering with siblings, making endless messes and watching hours of mindless TV.
"Mommy, he took my toy!" "Get out of the bathroom already! Argh!" "I can’t believe her, she unfriended me!" Sound familiar? If you’re the parent of a toddler, tween or teen, you’ve likely heard some variation of these recently. These distress calls, while not the most pleasant sounds of parenting, are heard from children of all ages during disputes with siblings, friends and, yes, even their parents.
Conflicts like these are a part of life. For many parents, the ordeal of working out and muddling through their children’s battles feels infinitely more difficult than dealing with their own. Can’t we all just get along? Well, no. Not everyone gets along all of the time. And is a little conflict really so bad? If everyone always agreed, the world would be a very boring place.
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